Scott claims world's fastest and coolest helmets with new Cadence Plus and Centric Plus

Cadence is all about speed with removable plugs; Centric balances aero with ventilation

The new Cadence Plus is faster than any aero road helmet on the market, Scott claims, and its new Centric Plus can be cooler than wearing no helmet at all, the Swiss company argues. As the world readies for the Tour de France, Scott has rolled out these two new road helmets that come with MIPS technology. 

The new Cadence Plus features three removable plugs in the front of the helmet. As there is often an inverse relationship between helmet speed and helmet ventilation, the Cadence Plus achieves ultimate speed by temporarily sealing off front ventilation. 

Even with the plugs removed, Scott claims the Cadence Plus is faster than its nearest competitor by a fraction of a second over 40km. Putting in the plugs makes the helmet a claimed 5 seconds faster over 40km.

Scott tested the helmets straight on at 40kph air speed, with a 20-degree head tilt. Exactly how aero helmets are tested is always a point of contention among helmet makers. 

Plugs in the front of the Cadence Plus reduce ventilation but increase speed
Plugs in the front of the Cadence Plus reduce ventilation but increase speed

Scott designed both helmets to have good internal ventilation. Scott claims the Centric Plus is cooler (by 1%) than wearing no helmet at all, when riding at 40kph, thanks in part to air being channeled over the back of the head.

The Centric Plus is aimed at road and cross-country MTB racers, and features more ventilation than the Cadence Plus. The Centric Plus is not only cooler than all the main competitors, Scott claims, but also 2% cooler than wearing no helmet at all when riding at 40kph. 

Scott partnered with the University of Adelaide on the helmet designs, which were more than two years in the works.

"One of the most satisfying aspects of this project was seeing all the science and engineering brought to life in this product, and knowing that professional riders will be wearing the helmet in both the Tour de France and the Rio Olympics," said associate professor Richard Kelso, who led the project at the University of Adelaide.

The Cadence Plus comes with MIPS technology
The Cadence Plus comes with MIPS technology

"From an aerodynamics perspective, the Scott Cadence Plus performs better than any of the leading helmets in the market today. Depending on the helmet it's tested against, this new helmet could provide anywhere from a 0.2-metre to a 2-metre advantage over its competitors in a bunch sprint. In professional cycling terms, that could make the difference between wearing the winning jersey or not."

The Cadence Plus will be available later this year for approximately $200 and the Centric Plus for about $250. UK and AU pricing was not immediately available.

Scott claims its new Centric Plus is cooler than wearing no helmet at all (by 2%) when riding at 40kph
Scott claims its new Centric Plus is cooler than wearing no helmet at all (by 2%) when riding at 40kph

Ben Delaney

US Editor-in-Chief
Ben has been writing about bikes since 2000, covering everything from the Tour de France to Asian manufacturing to kids' bikes. The former editor-in-chief of VeloNews, he began racing in college while getting a journalism degree at the University of New Mexico. Based in the cycling-crazed city of Boulder, Colorado, with his wife and two kids, Ben enjoys riding most every day.
  • Discipline: Road (paved or otherwise), cyclocross and sometimes mountain. His tri-curious phase seems to have passed, thankfully
  • Preferred Terrain: Quiet mountain roads leading to places unknown
  • Current Bikes: Scott Foil Team Issue, Specialized S-Works Tarmac, Priority Eight city bike... and a constant rotation of test bikes
  • Dream Bike: A BMC Teammachine SLR01 with disc brakes and clearance for 30mm tires (doesn't yet exist)
  • Beer of Choice: Saison Dupont
  • Location: Boulder, CO, USA

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